But I doubt ANYONE, from the Left to the Right, favors hurting or even killing black Americans. Right now, both supporters and opponents of Black Lives Matter (BLM) appear to:
1) Agree that black lives very much DO matter, although there is a debate as to whether or not BLM is too Marxist or is merely trying to ensure that black Americans have a better future in a 21st Century America.
2) Disagree as to whether BLM or police "defunding" or police reform is the way to go...or perhaps a bit of both.
3) Agree that white hooligans are the ones causing the lion's share of the damage to major cities and are muddying up the waters of how to proceed on racial justice and inequality.
Meanwhile, as the violence in our nation (it is REAL, folks!) continues unabated:
1) So congratulations are in order (?) to Portland Mayor Ted Wheeler for finally figuring out that the violence and injuries/deaths are NOT due to President Trump or federal forces (defending federal property!), but rather the violent protestors (mostly young, white hooligans!) who are STILL causing problems now that federal forces have backed off.
Most of us, throughout the political spectrum, have figured that out. Most of us have also figured out that Portland Mayor Ted Wheeler is a freakin' moron who needs to take charge of his city--and most of the jackasses causing the devastation and violence are young, white, rich or middle-class individuals who have NO business speaking for black Americans.
2) Ditto for Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot--another freakin' moron--who's is up to her neck in the blood of Chicagoans (mostly black and brown!). Ripping on Trump is her right, although the question raised from Washington as to the carnage of ethnic minorities dying on her watch should NEVER be shrugged off.
If Mayor Lightfoot, who is as much a failure as Ted Wheeler, won't accept help from Washington, she needs to put a stop to the carnage herself. Only NOW is she weighing in, with tony malls and Nordstrom's and Macy's being looted in Downtown Chicago (LINK: and with the police engaged in shootouts with rioters.
It's almost as if when the rich, and when the upscale white populace, and when perhaps political pundits weigh in, that the violence--including to black and brown neighborhoods--will be confronted.
3) Detroit as well, which has taken a more aggressive stand against the looting and violence, is still suffering from more violence, and the police chief, James Craig (who happens to be black, as if it should make a difference) is blaming the anti-police rhetoric and COVID-19 release policies.
4) Speaking of COVID-19 release policies, we should ALL recognize the horror of an Alexandria rape suspect killing his accuser after being released.
So, when do we stop the goddamn releases?
5) Closer to home, Westside Councilmember Mike Bonin, who has very often advocated for the rights of the homeless, including those causing neighborhoods to be livable for years, and who has called for defunding the police, has reportedly called the LAPD eight times to protect himself from protesters. This has been reported throughout the world although Bonin has denied this.
So here we are, amidst a chaotic plague/civil unrest/political nightmare. We're racially divided, but as a nation overall majority-opposed to reparations.
Black Americans DO want police reform, but do NOT want defunding any more than the rest of us.
Because NO ONE in their right minds want to be harmed or die, or even to be placed at risk.
So with the understanding that Gallup or any other poll all show that black Americans are NOT in favor of defunding the police, maybe we should all unite as a nation to fight back against any so-called "leaders" who are anti-police.
If you're black and anti-police altogether, please recognize that you're in the extreme minority.
And if you're white and anti-police, and tearing down cities, and causing harm more to black neighborhoods and black economic opportunities, then you REALLY need to see the inside of a jail cell for a long, long time.
And finally, if you're a City Councilmember of Mayor of either Los Angeles or any other major city, just DON'T call the police if you're being threatened. Because YOU are the morons who are threatening the lives of the rest of us by your pediatric, pedantic anti-police rhetoric and policies.
Because black lives DO matter, and no one should die because of your stupid, self-destructive rhetoric and policies.
(CityWatch Columnist, Kenneth S. Alpern, M.D, is a dermatologist who has served in clinics in Los Angeles, Orange, and Riverside Counties, and is a proud husband and father to two cherished children and a wonderful wife. He was termed out of the Mar Vista Community Council (MVCC) twice after two stints as a Board member for 8-9 years and is also a Westside Village Zone Director. He previously co-chaired its Outreach and Planning Committees, and currently is Co-Chair of its MVCC Transportation/Infrastructure Committee. He was previously co-chair of the CD11 Transportation Advisory Committee and chaired the nonprofit Transit Coalition, and can be reached at Ken.Alpern@MarVista.org. He also co-chaired the grassroots Friends of the Green Line, which focused on a Green Line/LAX connection, at www.fogl.us. The views expressed in this article are solely those of Dr. Alpern.)